Monday, August 29, 2011

Back From D.C.

Summer 2011 is almost over. Where did it go? I just got back from a vacation to Washington D.C., Virginia and West Virginia. I was suppose to fly out to the west coast but hurricane Irene ruined that. So as for my trip to D.C., I can say that for sure, I'd rather live in New York. D.C. is the political capitol of the U.S. of course, and with that comes a bit more of a straight laced, button down culture.

Now I didn't explore the whole city, and stuck mainly to the downtown touristy areas. I saw the Washington Monument, the Vietnam Memorial, the WWII Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and the White House. I also took a walk downtown during the middle of the day. It's nice to see all the historic monuments that I've seen so many times on T.V. in person.

It is amazing how geographically close NYC is from "the South". The Mason-Dixon line is actually the southern border of Pennsylvania and is considered the cultural boundary of the north and southern U.S. and was also the line that divided the slave states and the non slave states for much of the 1800s. It lies a mere 120 miles southeast of Midtown Manhattan.

South of the Mason-Dixon line, exists the southern culture of which many northerners know from stereotypes. While I was in rural Virginia, and West Virginia I saw the southern country lifestyle up close in person. I went to a Casino in Charles Town West Virginia, where you can drink, smoke, gamble and maybe even meet a prostitute in the same room. I actually won 30 dollars gambling on the slot machines, the only time I think I ever gambled in a casino. In Virginia, I got cursed at by a redneck for hitting his car when I opened the car door in an IHOP parking lot. I got many stares at various places whenever we went out to many places. I never felt uncomfortable to the point of feeling unsafe, but did not feel like rural Virginia could be home to me. My friend says he feels at home down south and he's an ex-New Yorker. Go figure.

I did learn that in the south, different towns have very different feelings and cultures towards race. Where one town might frown upon an inter-racial couple, another town miles away would have no problem. In other words, communities must be judged on an individual basis. That is something I failed to consider.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Summer 2011

We are in the midst of a sweltering typically New York City heat wave. Temperatures are in the high 90s and the humidity is not much lower. So far summer has been nothing but work. Last weekend I slept in and didn't even go out. I was just too damn tired. I realize now what a stupid decision that was. Summer will be over before I know it, and I should spend every free day I have out enjoying life and the outdoors even if it is by myself.

Work is still sucking my life and time away. I have money now so I can't complain, but it seems that I have no time to spend it. It's such a catch 22: last summer I was unemployed and had little money, but I had all the time in the world to hang out and enjoy my life. This summer I have plenty of spending money but I'm working like a dog, and it seems like I have no time to spend it, let alone enjoy it.

Weekends seem to disappear over night. Before I know it, it's Monday morning and time to go to work. I even have to work on the weekend sometimes. It is such a horrible wager to make. Be broke, or be busy all the time.

I'm going to Washington D.C. in the end of August, I'll take a flight over to Oregon after that. Something to look forward to but not much. I need to get out more, but my job pretty much ruins the possibility of doing anything on the weekday. I remember back when I used to be a security guard and I worked 40 hours a week. This was the summer of 2005. I remember that summer as been a particularly fun summer mostly because I discovered this bar called Lit in the East Village and it was a particularly good spot for easy hook ups. But I can't remember what I did on work nights. I assume I mostly went home, I think a few nights I went out or hung out in friend's houses. I smoked a lot of pot back then so memory is a bit hazy.

It's mid-summer and so far the fun has yet to begun.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I Want My Life Back

At 6:30 AM I burst awake to the sounds of my screeching alarm clock. I silence it with a whack from from my sleeping hand. When I finally get up, I am barely able to scarf down a quick bowl of cereal. A shower gets me a little close to actually being awake. One last look in the mirror before I head out to a 12 hour work day. By the time I get home it will be dark, even for this time of the year, and I will have returned to this zombie-like state.

Now all day at work I sit in a little cubicle, with a little head set staring at a dual-monitor computer for 12 hours. Case after case, the work load never ends. A glance out the window on a beautiful May day seeing the sail boats on the harbor being guided by people having fun, makes me realize what I am missing: My Life.

What I really regret is not going out and having more fun outdoors when I was unemployed last summer. I had so much free time, but what did I do? I spent most of it on the internet, at home with the shades pulled down. Picturesque summer days passed by me, and I missed them all. Now I long for the amount of time I can have. The weekends are not enough.

I've been in this situation before. I've known what its like to work a lot. I don't like it. I don't like working period. I like to party but I don't like to be broke. What can a person do in this situation? Summer is here (almost) and that means that this is the time to make things happen.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Sexual Politics

There goes that pesky sex drive again, making me do things I don't want to do. Making me bother that girl who just wants to be left alone. Making me go out and humiliate myself when I'd rather just stay in my comfort zone. I wish I could just turn it off, like a switch, so that I could concentrate on other things more productive. In truth, our sex drives have a purpose: they are what motivate us to procreate and this is of course the driving force of the continuum of all species.

I'm always amazed at how women can be sort of asexual in a way in terms of not being motivated by sex to do almost everything, as men mostly are. Then, they can suddenly become sexual creatures when they are with the right person in the right circumstance. It is a very peculiar outcome of thousands of years of human evolution. The hunter and gatherers that we were have conditioned women to attach emotional bonds with those men who could provide the most food and resources. They didn't think as much with their eyes and try to sleep with the first willing participant as the hunters did, and so they attached an emotional bond with a man first and then they become ferocious sexual beasts.

This is how things were with a girl I once dated. She had such an emotional bond with me that I excited her sexually by almost everything I did. Had I met her on the street or perhaps in a bar she might not have even been willing to engage in a conversation with me, let alone sleep with me. The same woman who would might not look at you twice, could suddenly become intensely sexual attracted to you if you struck the right emotional chords with her through the right situation. This has frustrated men since the beginning of time, who merely wanted to spread their seed without any emotional baggage.

Meeting women in bars has its ups and downs. On the one hand you can get laid really fast and even jump-start head first into a relationship in the fast track. These usually never last longer than a month or two. On the other hand you must deal with rejection from very beautiful and highly sexualized women who just want to go out for a drink and have a good time and who are not there to meet anyone. As frustrating as it is, the possibility of success far out weighs any fear of failure. That's evolution in a nutshell.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The City Part II

I've been totally addicted to Google Earth for the past year or so. It is one of the best tools for viewing 3 dimensional aerial angles of cityscapes. For New York, almost all of Manhattan is represented in 3D. This allows you to fly through the city as if you were Superman, or Batman over and through the skyscrapers. It's the coolest thing ever.

Since last summer, I have learned to make 3D building models that can be uploaded to Google Earth. It took a while to learn, but I got the hang of it. So far, I have uploaded over 200 models. My account name is "KingofQueenz". My models mostly cover the Queens area, but I have numerous models in the Bronx, and Brooklyn. I did the entire Queens West development. I've done most of the buildings in Long Island City, Forest Hills, Woodside, and Coney Island. Making 3D building models is my obsession. I'd like to have every building in the world represented on Google Earth in 3D. I know of coarse this is an arduous task for one person, but at least I can try to get as many models up in my geographic area.

My Queens West development 3D models:

My models are not the best. I usually don't put insane amounts of details in them. I'd rather make 10 decent models in one week than spend a week to make one perfect model. Some other sketchup artists have uploaded some amazing 3D models that have exquisite detail.

These two models are the Schaefer Landing North and South Towers. They are a new luxury highrise apartment complex in Williamsburg. I'm very proud of these models. There is a sense of great satisfaction when I complete a nice 3D models.

I've been spending way to much time on Google Earth and Google Sketchup, the free program used to make the 3D models.I can literally spend 8 hours straight making models, holding in my piss and not eating. This is real life addiction. But who ever heard of someone addicted to Google Earth?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The City

For some reason I am still obsessed with New York City. I have this romanticized notion of New York, similar to Woody Allen's character in Manhattan. To me, New York is Metropolis and Gotham all in one. It has been leaving its impression on millions and millions for hundreds of years.

I've dated many girls who have moved here from small towns and suburbs. I love that cliche of the small town girl who dreams of life in the big city. She finally realizes her dreams and is overwhelmed by all its audacity. In the U.S. we have this anti urban attitude. We put this emphasis on small towns and suburbs, the quintessential American dream of a house on a quiet suburban street. We've neglected our cities unlike many other countries who celebrated them. New York remained for so long seen as an eyesore in the fold of the American landscape. Americans hated it, mocked it, were afraid to go to it. They called it a cesspool or urban decay. And New York lost population for the 50 years as did virtually every other large American city. Only recently has the trend reversed.

For me growing up in New York, there was never a dream of a house in the suburbs. I liked my high rise apartment with the view of the skyline out my window. Why would I ever want to replace that with a bunch of suburban houses and trees? The city to me was a place of excitement. It has life and energy. Taking the train into Manhattan and emerging out into a "Metropolis" of sorts gave me the impression of what Clark Kent might have felt when he left Smallville, although not quite as dramatic. Suddenly you are in a giant city and you realize how small your are in this world. This allure has attracted many a small town folk, and I think I'd be one of them if I had such a past.

What does New York represent to me? It represents an American dream, American ingenuity, American diligence. Not long after New York was founded (then of coarse New Amsterdam), there was a great migration to move out west where people settled in mostly in small, sparsely situated towns. This gave birth to the rural lifestyle that is so characteristic of early American life. This rural, small town lifestyle somehow became the "real" America, that so many patriots and politicians try to use as their badge of American authenticity. The big cities back east were already becoming over populated cesspools of filth, disease and of coarse, immigrants. This can't be the "real" America. No "real" Americans live in a log cabin, in a tiny town, they know their neighbors and go to church on Sunday.

So there I be, in the big city. You might see me riding the subway, or stretching my neck to see the top of a new skyscraper. You might see me jaded and blue, or you might just be lucky enough to see me crack a smile.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Thinker

As the Sun sets over the Secular Metropolis, the thinker begins his blog, eyes glued to the screen of his laptop, fingers sweaty from their constant contact with the keyboard. What is on his mind that is so important to write about? It is his obsession with New York? His passion for Atheism? His analysis of social dynamics? His love of science? Maybe all of the above.

I love writing in the third person. It requires a bit more thinking when writing about yourself.


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